Freebie Feelers… Orcs Must Die! Unchained
Freebie Feelers is a series where we download the free monthly console-specific or newly released free-to-play games to test their worth.This series will contain some useful information as well as plenty of personal opinion. While these articles may not be reviews, we hope that you will be able to use them to help decide whether that free download is worth it.
What is it?
Diving head first into the third installment of Robot Entertainment’s green skinned franchise I think to myself: “How many more orcs must perish before somebody takes a stand?” But who gives a hoot right? This is Orcs Must Die! Unchained. It’s free for the foreseeable future, on PS4, so let’s get slaying! This is the first time that the Orcs Must Die franchise has been released on PS4. The only other notable console release being the debut title on the Xbox Live Arcade.
Out with the old and in with the new. Orcs Must Die! Unchained has scrapped the notorious multiplayer battle arena-esque Siege mode and instead brought us a shiny new game variant in the form of Sabotage. Here, two teams of three face off against each other in a like-for-like instance of the same map. Same waves of orcs, same special enemies, starting at same time. The curve ball comes when a team acquires one of the many new special consumables. These are designed to hinder the other team and include summoning tougher creatures for the opposing team to fight and casting spells to disrupt their traps. The team that survives the most waves of enemies is the winner. Simple.
A handful of heroes have also been sidelined in order to bring in some fresh faces to the roster. Sir Winston, deemed overpowered by many, has been replaced by a very energetic young mage named Zoey who has plenty of tricks up her sleeves to keep you on your toes. In a nutshell: It’s more of the same orc bashing chaos that we all know and love with a few new faces and abilities.
What did you think?
Orcs Must Die! Unchained is, in my opinion, now best played as a party, with friends. Unfortunately, the changes that have been made in this most recent release make it rather difficult for the solo player to enjoy and/or progress. The game feels very “grindy” and I found most of my play time spent trying to acquire the next rank of a trap or ability. I’d much rather the game was more strategic, like it was in Orcs Must Die! 2, when I was donning my “Tactical Pants of Trap Placement +1”. The main reason for this, I’ve noticed, is the waves of enemies don’t appear to get any smarter or spontaneous. Rather, just have more health. This leads to a vicious loop of trying to acquire a higher ranked trap to tackle said mobs, only to find harder ones in the next wave!
The removal of Siege mode has also had a noticeably negative impact on the community and, whilst Sabotage has its perks, it’s left a sour taste in the mouth of the more competitive player base.
Is it worth downloading?
If you want a game that you can pile into with a group of friends of an evening and have a laugh, then by all means hit that download button. If, however, you want a game that has both the party fun element AND enough single player content to keep you occupied until the next games night, I would stick to Orcs Must Die! 2.